As the thermometer heads toward 95 — with plenty of that nice Westport humidity — it’s a good day to take note of some new signs around town.
Sure, we think there are too many. But a few new ones are well worth reading.
Last spring, Brandon Malin — a Coleytown Middle School 8th grader — spearheaded a drive to remind drivers not to leave children or pets in cars that quickly turn sweltering, even on mild days. He got the idea from similar signs in Fairfield parking lots.
With the help of the Staples High School art department — and the support of Westport Animal Shelter Advocates, First Selectman Jim Marpe and other town officials — he saw the project through to completion. (Brandon also raised money to produce the signs.)
They’re up now at Compo Beach and Longshore. Hopefully, downtown lots will be next.
One of Brandon Malin’s signs (under an already-decorated one) at Compo Beach …
The signs say: “If you love them, don’t leave them. Heat Kills!” Below that is the Police Department phone number to report a child or animal in a car, and the reminder: “One call can save a life.”
Heat like today’s makes all of us a bit fuzzy-headed.
Thanks to Brandon, we can focus a bit more clearly on the people and pets we love.
… and another at Longshore.
The skies over Westport are filled with drones.
But Brandon Malin’s occupies a special place.
He’s still a middle school student. (He moves up to Staples from Coleytown later this month.) But that hasn’t stopped Brandon from producing a video that shows off our town in fresh, intriguing and loving ways.
For more than a year, he compiled footage of Westport from the air. It took 3 months to edit down to the finished product.
Brandon plans to continue filming Westport — and locations beyond — with his quadcopter.
How’s that for a head’s-up!
Last summer, a Ridgefield toddler died when he was left inside a parked car.
Brandon Malin — a Coleytown Middle School 8th grader — thought of that, when he saw “Heat Kills” signs in Fairfield parking lots. He knows that every year, children and pets are left in cars that quickly become sweltering — even on mild days.
But Brandon did more than think.
With the support of Westport Animal Shelter Advocates, First Selectman Jim Marpe and other town officials, he’s creating signs. They’ll remind drivers not to leave kids — or pets — in closed vehicles, especially in warm weather.
The signs will be installed in town-owned parking lots, where police feel the risk is greatest. Possibilities include Parker Harding, the Baldwin lot, the beaches, Longshore and library.
After the initial rollout, Brandon will contact owners of private parking lots too.
Right now he’s working with the Staples High School art department on the design.
He’s also trying to raise the $2,500 needed to produce the signs. All donations are tax deductible, and the target deadline is April 8. Click here to help!
But whether you donate or not, remember one thing: Heat Kills!
Brandon Malin and his dog Cali.
Most of David Pogue’s Yahoo videos are short.
The tech guru has made a career — one of his many — providing bite-sized information on topics like how to open Windows 10’s secret start menu. They’re little snacks, to help you navigate your tech life.
The other day though, the Westporter posted a full-course meal. It’s 9 minutes long — and fascinating.
The SparkNotes version is that Pogue’s daughter Tia — a Staples High School senior — was deep into the Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen.
One item she needed: Get a child to write a letter to the universe. Then launch the letter into space. Oh yeah: Provide video proof too.
Tia — with a little help from Dad — managed to do it. It wasn’t easy. In fact, it was really, really hard — as the video shows.
Tia and David Pogue, in a screenshot from their Yahoo video.
But it’s well worth watching, for both the technology and the surprises. Pogue is a gifted storyteller.
There’s even a cameo appearance by Tia’s drone operator. He’s Brandon Malin — a very talented Westporter.
Brandon is also an 8th grader, at Coleytown Middle School.
(To watch the video — and/or read David Pogue’s story — click here.)
David Pogue lost his drone.
Brandon Malin still has his. The other day, he took it to Compo Beach.
His photos — 2 long-range views of Westport’s iconic shore — are spectacular. So is his tighter shot of South Beach.
This weekend will be hot — mid-90s — and clear. It’s perfect beach weather.
Whether you’re headed to Compo or wish you lived close enough to Westport to go, enjoy Brandon’s photos.
Click on or hover over photos to enlarge.
Fun fact: Brandon is a rising 8th grader at Coleytown Middle School. “06880” will joyfully run his drone shots for years to come.
Check out this great view of the 1st-ever Staples High School Pops Concert at Levitt Pavilion, courtesy of Brandon Malin’s drone. (Click on or hover over to enlarge — you’ll love it!)